is no process at this time. All
permits issued for this type of work fall in to one of following categories:
The work is being done by a private contractor pursuant to an
Enforcement Action by DEP or a county management agency.
The private contractor is hired by the party responsible for causing the
damage. This does not require a
permit – the enforcement action is the permit.
DEP or whoever did not choose to file an enforcement action
because the work is being done voluntarily, and the work needs to be authorized
which is when I would permit it. This
is still work done by a private contractor who is hired by the person
responsible for causing the damage.
A damaged area is discovered and the responsible party cannot be
found or determined. In this case
we have only had one volunteer organization who has ever asked to do the repair
work. The permits for this are
issued on a case by case basis as damage is found.
following is some information that I put together to explain permitting for
coral repair activities.
YOU CAN DO TO HELP
you discover coral damage, you can collect valuable information for us to start
the ball rolling. If you would
please note the GPS coordinates for the area, note damaged species type and
sizes if possible, document the area with video or photography if possible, then
contact the nearest FWC, DEP, FKNMS, or local environmental office such as the
Broward County Dept. of Environmental Protection.
PLEASE DO NOT ATTEMPT TO UPRIGHT CORALS!!!
This activity is actually counteractive to any repair operation, not to
mention illegal. When corals are up
righted, the extent of the damage cannot be detected because the corals appear
to be attached. This impacts any
survey of the damaged area that is done to assess the fines and penalties for
guilty parties, and it may also mean that the damaged corals never get repaired
because they appear to be attached and cannot be located.
a state, federal, or county agency have been notified of coral damage, the
following process takes place:
We attempt to determine whether the area has been damaged due to human
impact. The video and photography
really comes in handy for us to examine the type of the damage and to see if we
should send divers out to examine and document the area further.
Priority is placed on repairing damage from human causes (anthropogenic
is the technical term). Resources
are limited and we focus those resources on repairing human caused damage rather
than damage due to natural causes.
We work with other state, federal and local agencies to try and determine
who may be the responsible party as in the case of damage due to groundings,
cable drag, survey work, etc. Sometimes
it is possible to determine a guilty party because we are all aware of vessel
groundings, dredging projects, pipeline surveying projects, etc., and the damage
may be in an area where we know that this type of work is being done.
The FWC does issue licenses for coral repair to qualified volunteer
organizations that have demonstrated experience conducting successful hard
bottom reparation activities only:
When there is no enforcement action involved and the guilty party cannot be
When there is no funding available to conduct the repair work through agency
personnel or contractors; and
When the dislodged corals cannot be utilized or are not appropriate for other
ongoing repair projects.
FWC coordinates the issuance of these licenses with the appropriate state,
federal and local agencies to ensure that all agencies have input.
The FWC does not issue licenses for these type of activities within the
Florida Keys National Marine Sanctuary. In
the grand scheme of things, the FWC license is the last option for conducting
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